Oldest Hebrew mention of Jerusalem found on rare papyrus from 7th century BCE
A rare, ancient papyrus dating to the First Temple Period — 2,700 years ago — has been found to bear the oldest known mention of Jerusalem in Hebrew.
The fragile text, believed plundered from a cave in the Judean Desert cave, was apparently acquired by a private individual several years ago. Radiocarbon dating has determined it is from the 7th century BCE, making it one of just three extant Hebrew papyri from that period, and predating the Dead Sea Scrolls by centuries.
The slip of papyrus, which was formally unveiled by the Israel Antiquities Authority on Wednesday, measures 11 centimeters by 2.5 centimeters (4.3 inches by 1 inch). Its two lines of jagged black paleo-Hebrew script appear to have been a dispatch note recording the delivery of two wineskins “to Jerusalem,” the Judean Kingdom’s capital city. The full text of the inscription reads: “From the female servant of the king, from Naharata (place near Jericho) two wineskins to Jerusalem.”
The fact that the note was written on papyrus, rather than cheaper clay ostraca, suggests the consignment of wineskins may have been sent to a person of high status.
Speaking at a press conference in Jerusalem with IAA officials on Wednesday, Israel Prize-winning Biblical scholar Shmuel Ahituv said the mention of a “female servant of the king” sending the wineskins to “Yerushalem,” indicated that it was sent by a prominent woman to the capital.
UNESCO resolution is a 'disgrace to intelligent people,' says Temple Mount archeologist
On the eve of UNESCO’s Wednesday vote in Paris to ratify a resolution denying Jewish ties to Judaism’s holiest site, Temple Mount Sifting Project co-founder and archeologist Dr. Gabriel Barkay dismissed the ballot as an affront to science and history.
The resolution, which refers to the Temple Mount solely by its Muslim name of Al-Haram Al-Sharif – ostensibly eliminating its connection to Judaism and Christianity – is expected to be approved by the committee comprised of 21 member states at its 40th session.
“I’m an archeologist, not a politician,” Barkay said Tuesday at a press conference arranged by Media Central at the project’s headquarters in Jerusalem’s Emek Tzurim National Park.
“I cherish all civilizations of Jerusalem, without exception... Jesus and the Temple Mount are referred to in the New Testament over 20 times. Jesus went there prior to his crucifixion and overturned a table from money-changers and prophesied about the Temple Mount. So he who tries to jeopardize the Jewish connection to the Temple Mount actually undermines Christianity, because it is based on Jesus and his connection to the Temple Mount.”
PreOccupiedTerritory: Ancient Palestinians Tired Of Zionist Time-Travelers Planting Jewish Evidence (satire)
Palestinian farmers of the tenth century Before the Common Era have grown weary of Zionist conspirators from the distant future appearing and planting evidence of ancient Jewish civilization, local representatives reported today.
Idyllic, pastoral Palestine has long known conquest and occupation, with rule shifting from one foreign ruler to another over the centuries, but the simple, peace-loving indigenous Palestinians have clung to the land. Lately, however, strange people from a different time and place have come from nowhere to build structures, bury artifacts, and falsify the history of Palestine.
“They call themselves ‘Zionists’ whatever that means,” observed Abdul Hassan, who speaks Arabic which the Zionists have made you think would appear in Palestine only many centuries later. “When I asked one of them what they were dong on my family’s land, he laughed and said in time, no one would ever believe it was ever my land – that he and his associates were from the future, and were making sure someone called the ‘Jews’ were recognized as the indigenous inhabitants. It was all very weird.”
“But then it happened again, and neighbors began talking about the same thing happening to them,” continued Hassan. “Pretty soon the whole countryside was awash in these tales of people who came from a different time, set on altering something called ‘history.’ I don’t even know what that is. All I know is they get in the way of my farming and herding with increasing frequency lately, and I’ve got a family to feed here.”
UNESCO adopts another resolution ignoring Jewish link to Temple Mount
An important panel at the United Nations Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organization (UNESCO) on Wednesday morning approved a controversial resolution that ignores Jewish and Christian ties to the Temple Mount. The decision came a week after a similar resolution was approved by the body and elicited angry responses from Israel, several world leaders and even the body’s own director-general.In dramatic vote, UNESCO Jerusalem resolution passes with slim support
Convening at its annual meeting in Paris, UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee adopted Draft Resolution 40COM 7A.13, entitled “Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls,” by a large majority, with 10 countries voting in favor, eight abstaining and two opposing the text. Eight “yes” votes were needed for the resolution to pass.
Jamaica was absent and did not participate in the vote.
This year’s member countries of the committee made things particularly difficult for Israeli diplomats battling the resolution. Germany, Colombia and Japan, all sympathetic nations to Israel, are no longer involved, and in their place are Tunisia, Kuwait, Lebanon and Indonesia, bringing to nine the total number of Muslim countries. Those nine and Vietnam were all assumed to have voted for the resolution. Poland, Finland, Croatia, Portugal, the four European countries, had indicated they would abstain.
The 21 nations with voting rights on the World Heritage Committee were: Finland, Poland, Portugal, Croatia, Turkey, Azerbaijan, South Korea, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Kazakhstan, Tunisia, Kuwait, Lebanon, Peru, Cuba, Jamaica, Burkina Faso, Zimbabwe, Angola and Tanzania.
The resolution, which accuses Israel of various violations, echoed last week’s decision in referring to the Temple Mount compound solely by its Muslim names, “Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al-Sharif,” and defined it only as “a Muslim holy site of worship.” As the site of the two Biblical temples, the mount is the holiest place in Judaism. But unlike last week’s resolution, the draft did not mention the importance of Jerusalem’s Old City for “the three monotheistic religions.”
In a dramatic upset the World Heritage Committee approved Wednesday, with less than a majority vote, a resolution that ignored Jewish ties to the Temple Mount.Knesset Speaker asks Vatican to join battle against UNESCO’s denial of history
Israel had feared the matter would pass by consensus, or that only a few of the 21-member states would abstain or oppose the text.
Instead, Tanzania and Croatia had asked for a secret ballot. When the votes were counted, only 10 countries had voted for the motion, two opposed it, eight abstained and one nation, Jamaica, was absent from the room.
The last minute twists and turns, were part of an Israeli bluff to counter a Palestinian threat intended to pressure WHC to pass the resolution by consensus.
The Palestinian Authority and Jordan had warned that they would strengthen the Muslim claims to the site in the resolution, unless there was a consensus vote on the existing text, which was a softer version than the one the WHC approved last year.
Israel allowed them to believe they had the consensus support. Part of that strategy was the release statements to the media about how Israel expected a major loss at the WHC meeting in Paris.
Assuming that consensus support, the Palestinians and the Jordanians submitted the softer version of the resolution for a vote on Wednesday. It was only until the meeting opened, and Tanzania and Croatia called for a secret ballot, that they suddenly understood that events would not go as planed.
For over half-an-hour the Arab countries on the committee led by Lebanon and with the help of Cuba, attempted and ultimately failed to push forward a consensus motion.
The vote that then took place, was on the less contentious text.
UNESCO’s Standing Committee’s denial of the Old City of Jerusalem’s history is an affront to both Christianity and Judaism, Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein wrote Wednesday in a letter to Vatican Secretary of State Pietro Cardinal Parolin.IsraellyCool: Delicious Palestinian Irony Of The Day
Edelstein urged the Holy See to “use its best offices to prevent the recurrence of developments of this sort."
The resolution, the Speaker wrote, “is an assault on history and is deeply offensive to both Christianity and Judaism. The denial of the historicity of the two Jerusalem Temples and the Temple Mount as recounted in both the Old and New Testaments is a terrible indictment of the international community when repeatedly adopted by an important UN body.
“The outrageous repudiation of the millennia-old bond between Judaism and its holiest shrines in Jerusalem is a blatant attempt to rewrite history,” he added. “The annals of both our religions cannot be erased by raised hands and counted votes.”
Edelstein said the time has come for the international community to pass a resolution reaffirming Jerusalem as the holy city for the three major monotheistic religions, “a city where the two Temples stood and from which the Word of G-d was first promulgated to humanity by our prophets.”
This report is from over two weeks ago, but it is too good to pass up.Julie Bishop slams the recent UNESCO decision
The head of the PA’s National Commission for Education, Culture, and Science attacked this ballsy video put out by Israel’s MFA for conveying the message the Jews are the indigenous inhabitants of the land of Israel (which we are).
PA: ‘Palestinian Arabs the original inhabitants of Israel’
Amin al-Sudani, the head of the commission, said that “This hysterical and imaginary film was prepared and published as part of the overall war against our people by the occupation after they took control of our country, killing and exiling its inhabitants since the Nakba in 1948.”
Al-Sudani called on the international community, especially UNESCO, to convene immediately to intervene and stop Israel’s “crimes against the history, heritage, and identity of the Palestinians.”
And here’s the clincher. Notice the head’s name – Amin al-Sudani.
In other words, a man whose very name points to how his family came from Sudan, is claiming his people are indigenous to Palestine!
Talk about fabricated histories. (h/t Yoel)
Australia's Foreign Minister has slammed the recent UNESCO decision entitled "Occupied Palestine" in a letter to the Exceutive Council of Australian Jewry.PMW: New PA school named after mastermind of Munich Olympics massacre
Minister Julie Bishop wrote that she was "dismayed and disappointed that this draft decision was adopted by the UNESCO Executive Board... The text is highly politicised, unbalanced and provocative, and reflects poorly on UNESCO...."
PA official on importance of school's name:PA TV broadcasts Palestinian boy singing song misrepresenting Israeli cities as “Palestine”
"To commemorate the memory of this great national fighter"
School in West Bank named after Salah Khalaf, head of Black September terror group. Attacks he planned include murder of 11 Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics and murder of 2 American diplomats in Sudan
PA Ministry of Education is responsible for naming schools
This is the 4th PA school named after terrorist Salah Khalaf
PMW has written to the European Union which funds the Palestinian Authority Ministry of Education to condition its funding on the PA changing the names of all schools named after terrorists
The Palestinian Authority has again chosen to name a school after a terrorist. Soon children in the West Bank city of Tulkarem will be reminded daily that murdering Israelis is heroic when they attend "the Martyr Salah Khalaf School," which is named after the head of the Black September terror organization, Salah Khalaf, also known as Abu Iyad. Attacks he planned include the murder of the 11 Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics (Sept. 5, 1972) and the murder of 2 American diplomats in Sudan (March 1, 1973).
The Palestinian Authority laid the cornerstone to the new school a few weeks ago, and at the ceremony PA official Issam Abu Bakr, District Governor of Tulkarem, "emphasized the importance of the project of building the school named after Martyr Salah Khalaf, in order to commemorate the memory of this great national fighter." [Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 24, 2016]
"Acre, Jaffa, and Nazareth are ours Omar sing about the Galilee and the Golan (Heights)
Haifa, Acre, Jaffa, and Nazareth are ours
Osama sing about the Galilee and the Golan (Heights)
From Bethlehem to Jenin is Palestinian
Ramle, Lod and Sakhnin are Palestinian...
Nowhere is more beautiful than Jerusalem no matter how much we travel"
[Official PA TV, The Best Home, Sept. 2, 2016]
The original song by Muhammad Kabha was aired on May 13, 2011 and has been rebroadcast nearly 200 times on official PA TV, PA TV Live and Fatah-run Awdah TV.
The song misrepresents the following places in Israel as "Palestinian": Jaffa, Acre, Haifa, Nazareth, the Galilee, the Golan Heights, Lod, Ramle, Jerusalem, Safed, Tiberias and Ashkelon.
Alan M. Dershowitz: Obama Shouldn't Tie His Successor's Hands on Israel-Palestinians
Recently, however, several past and present Obama officials have apparently advised the president to support, or at least not veto, the French resolution, as well as a one-sided Palestinian push to have the UN declare Israeli settlements illegal. It would be wrong for Obama to unilaterally reverse decades of US foreign policy during the lame-duck period. After all, in 2011 his administration vetoed an almost identical Palestinian proposal that called for Israel to “immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem.” Similarly, until now, Obama has repeatedly pressured the French and other European nations not to put forward any proposal related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, on the grounds that such initiatives discourage bilateral negotiations. This is surely the view of the majority of the Senate — which has its own constitutional authority to participate in foreign policy decisions. In fact, 88 senators signed an open letter to Obama in which they called on the president to veto any Security Council resolutions regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.Illegal Arab construction surges during Jewish holidays
Obama must realize that no lasting peace can be achieved in the remaining months of his presidency. There are a multitude of complex and contentious issues — most notably, the status of Jerusalem, the rights of so-called Palestinian refugees, and the situation in Gaza — that must be thoroughly addressed in order to achieve a lasting peace. Our next president will undoubtedly have to wade into the Israeli-Palestinian peace process again. The new administration — with the agreement of the Senate — should have full latitude to do what it deems most appropriate. It should not be stuck with parameters bequeathed to it by a president desperate to secure a short-term foreign policy “victory” that in the long term will make a resolution of the conflict more difficult to achieve.
If Obama feels that he must intrude in an effort to break the logjam before he leaves office, he should suggest that the current Israeli government offer proposals similar to those offered in 2000-2001 and 2008, and that this time the Palestinian leadership should accept them in face-to-face negotiations. But he should take no action (or inaction) that invites UN involvement in the peace process — involvement that would guarantee failure for any future president’s efforts to encourage a negotiated peace.
We should hear the views of both candidates on whether the United States should support or veto a Security Council Resolution that would tie their hands were they to be elected president.
Illegal Arab construction surged in Judea and Samaria during the Jewish holiday season, the non-governmental organization ‘Regavim’ reported, with Palestinian Authority residents taking advantage of the absence of building inspectors to establish facts on the ground.Israeli soldier lightly injured by gunfire from Lebanon
Regavim documented dozens of instances of illegal construction which were undertaken during the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, when building inspectors employed by the Civil Administration are on vacation.
In the southern Hevron Hills area, for instance, Arab workers laid the foundation for large building next to the Jewish community of Sussiya. The new building appears to be slated for use as a school.
In the eastern Gush Etzion region south of Jerusalem, Regavim members documented the construction of an unauthorized road just above the Nahal Arugot stream.
A Regavim spokesperson noted that the already lax Civil Administration efforts against illegal construction were completely halted during the holiday season, giving local Arabs the perfect opportunity to execute land grabs in broad daylight.
“Enforcement against Palestinian illegal construction is generally barely existent, and during the holidays they know to take advantage of the fact that all of the inspectors gone on vacation. This is a very problematic and puzzling practice that highlights the [authorities’] failure to deal with what is happening in the field.”
An IDF soldier was shot and lightly injured by gunfire coming from Lebanon while he was on duty in northern Israel on Wednesday, the army said.IDF Coed Commandos Step Up Training for Potential ISIS Attack on Israel From Sinai
The shots were fired from a passing car across the border, according to the IDF.
Israeli soldiers returned fire and “registered a hit,” the army said. There were no immediate reports of Lebanese injuries.
The Lebanese military denied that the shooting had taken place, telling the government news outlet NNA that “there is no truth to the claims by some media reports from the Zionist enemy” — meaning Israel — “that shots were fired from a car within Lebanon at an Israeli soldier.”
Following the Lebanese army’s statement, the IDF reiterated its account, saying its soldiers had “identified the vehicle that conducted the shooting” and that “fire was exchanged between the vehicle and IDF forces.”
The peacekeeping United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) said it was looking into the reports to determine if shots had indeed been fired across the border and was speaking with both the IDF and the Lebanese military.
A spokesperson for UNIFIL said shots appeared to have been fired from Kafr Kila, just across the border in Lebanon, though he noted that most of the information came from the IDF and had not yet been independently verified.
The IDF battalion charged with safeguarding Israel’s border with Egypt has been stepping up its preparation for potential ISIS attacks from the Sinai Peninsula, where members of the terrorist organization have been operating, the Hebrew news site nrg reported on Sunday.Teenage Israeli worker shot dead near Egypt border; IDF rules out terror
According to the report, Caracal – the Israeli army’s first completely co-ed combat battalion – is being particularly vigilant, as it is the only force separating innocent civilians in southern Israel from the possible wrath of Islamic State-affiliated groups. In addition, its commander told nrg, the terrorists in question could decide at any minute to shift their attention away from operations against Egypt and turn their sights on the Jewish state.
In an interview with nrg, Caracal commander Lt. Col. Elad Cohen said that he has been devoting the bulk of his men’s and women’s training for such an eventuality. Pointing to the difference between the work of soldiers in the West Bank to that of their counterparts in the south, he said, “The operational challenge and complexity here are far greater. We are situated along the border of a country with which we have peace. In other words, here, unlike in the West Bank, the enemy is not immediately visible. When I look out at the border, I see Egyptian police at the fence, shepherds and farmland. I cannot say exactly what is hiding behind them and who is observing us. It’s not like the guys you see in the videos, with black robes or orange suits.”
His assessments that an attack on Israel “could occur any minute” were echoed by Captain Kasusha Levine, who, until recently, served as the commander of Caracal’s operational company. However, she said, “None of the threats in the Sinai daunt us. We are prepared, and would even be happy, to confront those terrorists. Our soldiers understand the mission and take it seriously.”
An Israeli teenager was shot and killed near Mount Harif in southern Israel on Tuesday afternoon while working on the border fence with Egypt, officials said.Extremists who lauded Palestinian family's murder indicted
The bullet came from across the border in Egypt, though it was not immediately clear who fired it, the army said.
However, the shooting “does not appear to be connected to terror activities,” the army said in a statement.
The victim was Nimer Bassem Abu Amar, a 15-year-old from Lakiya, a predominantly Bedouin village in southern Israel, according to the Defense Ministry.
Egyptian security sources told Sky News Arabia the shots were fired during a clash between smugglers and Egyptian border guards.
According to the Arabic report, the smugglers opened fire at a group of Israeli contractors during the shootout, before Egyptian forces shot back.
The IDF could not confirm the claim, as details of the incident were still being investigated, a military spokesperson said.
Thirteen people, including five minors aged 14 to 17, were indicted Wednesday for inciting violence and terrorism following their celebration of the killing of a Palestinian family in a 2015 arson attack, the Jerusalem District Attorney's Office said Wednesday.Security forces find 'abduction manual' used by terrorists
The attack on July 31, 2015, in the Palestinian village of Duma, near Nablus, killed Riham Dawabsha, 27, her husband, Saad, 31, and their 18-month-old son, Ali. The sole survivor was the couple's other son, 4-year-old Ahmed, who sustained severe burns.
In December, Channel 10 News aired a video showing several people, later identified as far-right extremists, dancing at a wedding while waving weapons and stabbing a photo of Ali Dawabsha.
The footage shocked the nation, drawing unequivocal condemnation from across the political spectrum.
The groom, Yakir Ashbel, and several other men who were shown in the video were later questioned by police.
The recent arrest of an east Jerusalem-based terrorist cell affiliated with Islamic State has yielded a jarring find: a "how to" document detailing the best way to abduct Israeli soldiers and civilians.Anti-Abbas clashes erupt in three West Bank refugee camps
Channel 10 reported Tuesday that the document, dubbed by the defense establishment an "abduction manual," was found during a search of a suspect's computer.
According to the report, the document was not penned by Islamic State, but has apparently been circulating among the Gaza Strip-based terrorist organizations.
The "manual" includes step-by-step instructions on the best times to abduct Israelis, and advises three possible courses of action: abduction and concealment, abduction and imprisonment, and abduction and murder.
The document lists the pros and cons for each method in great detail, and explains that those planning such attacks must be "in good physical shape, experienced in hand-to-hand combat, and have prior experience" in carrying out terrorist attacks.
Another part of the document explains the best way to choose the victim.
Intense clashes erupted in three refugee camps Tuesday night between Palestinian youths and Palestinian Authority security forces, after a protest over the recent expulsion from the Fatah party of a Palestinian lawmaker was suppressed.Hamas: PA doesn't represent the Palestinian people
At least two people were wounded from reported live fire during the clashes, which took place in the refugee camps of al-Amari, near Ramallah, Balata, near Nablus, and Jenin.
The clashes began when PA security refused to allow a protest in support of Jihad Tummaleh, who was expelled from the Fatah party on Saturday by PA President Mahmoud Abbas, near Tummaleh’s home in the al-Amari refugee camp.
Tummaleh’s expulsion came after he organized a conference at al-Amari in support of “party unity.” The event was viewed by some in Ramallah as an effort to urge reconciliation between Abbas and his chief political rival Mohammad Dahlan.
Hamas member of parliament Ismail al-Ashkar openly questioned the legitimacy of Mahmoud Abbas' Ramallah government.Hamas returns Arafat’s Nobel prize to PA
In an interview with the Hamas newspaper Filastin, Ashkar said the "Palestinian" parliament, which has a Hamas majority, is discussing the possibility of reinstating Hamas Vice President Ismail Haniyeh as head of the government, after the Palestinian Authority's anti-peace actions.
Ashkar said the lack of government in Gaza is unacceptable, and the Ramallah government does not represent the entire Palestinian nation. He also said Hamdallah's government had not gained the parliament's faith and was affected by internal strife, causing problems in the areas of electricity, education, healthcare, and payments to government workers.
He also said Ismail Haniyeh's government was the only one that gained the faith of the parliament after Hamas won the 2006 elections.
A relative of Yasser Arafat says the Hamas terror group has returned the late Palestinian leader’s 1994 Nobel Peace Prize to the Palestinian government in the West Bank.GOP lawmakers may seek to renew Iran sanctions in November
Nasser al-Kidwa, Arafat’s nephew, said Tuesday that the medal will be among dozens of Arafat’s belongings to be displayed in a new museum opening in Ramallah on November 9. Kidwa is president of the Arafat Institute.
Arafat shared the Nobel prize with then-Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Foreign Minister Shimon Peres for reaching the 1993 Oslo interim peace agreement.
Arafat died in 2004, and three years later many items at his Gaza headquarters were lost when the rival Hamas terror group seized control of the territory.
Al-Kidwa said the only missing piece that Hamas has returned was the medal.
In what could be their first move after the November 8 elections, members of the US House of Representatives are reportedly expected to vote to extend the Iran Sanctions Act by a further 10 years.State Dept Can’t Conceive of Iran Using American Prisoners as ‘Cash Cows’
Congressional aides told Reuters that the House Foreign Affairs Committee’s chairman, Congressman Ed Royce, will likely make the ISA, which expires on December 31, the first order of business when the House returns to Washington on November 14.
Despite the nuclear agreement, which gave sanctions relief to Iran in return for it curtailing its nuclear program, the US maintains sanctions on the Islamic Republic and certain Iranian companies and people. They are known as “specially designated nationals” or SDNs, for a variety of reasons, including Iran’s ballistic missile program, human rights record and support for groups the US deems to be terrorist organizations.
“The Iran Sanctions Act was enacted to curb Tehran’s support for terrorism and its very dangerous weapons proliferation. It should remain in place until the regime stops exporting terror and threatening us and our allies with deadly weapons,” Royce told Reuters. “That’s why I’ll be introducing a bipartisan, long-term extension of these important sanctions.”
After Shahini’s case was discussed, reporters asked Kirby about Americans being held by Iran and the appropriate response.
“This keeps happening, over and over and over again,” Associated Press reporter Matt Lee said before asking if Secretary of State John Kerry continues to talk to this Iranian counterpart about this issue, which Kirby said he does.
“I realize that you guys are insistent and make a case, make an argument that the sequencing of what happened in terms [of] January and the release of the U.S. prisoners, [the] return of the money to Iran, that that money was not a ransom,” Lee said. “But given the fact that this keeps happening, Iranian-Americans keep being arrested and keep being convicted in Iran, has it occurred to anyone here that, despite your best efforts to convince the Iranians and the rest of the world that these payments weren’t ransom, that in fact they regard them as ransom and [the payments] have had the effect of this kind of thing continuing to happen?”
Kirby answered that he cannot speak for what the Iranians may think, again denying that the payments were ransom.
“What may be behind this I don’t think any of us known with certainty,” Kirby said.
“Are you at least able to conceive of the idea that an Iranian perception, if in fact there is one, a perception in Iran that they successfully took and held Americans, then released them and at the same time received millions and millions and millions of dollars in cash, that their perception of that being perhaps ransom is contributing to what is the continued arrest and conviction of American citizens in their country?” Lee asked.
Kirby again said that he could not speak for what the Iranians may think and denied that the United States paid ransom.